A Lovely Discussion on God

atheist1

Reference: Discussions and what needs to be avoided
Pip and I have briefly exchanged our views on God here and there over the years. His viewpoint is theistic, coming from a Christian background. My viewpoint is non-theistic, coming from a Hindu background. But it was only recently that we got into a real discussion. We followed the discussion policy outlined in the link above, and the outcome of this discussion was fabulous for both of us.
This discussion precipitated from the example I provided in the policy above, because Pip wrote to me on Marty’s Blog:

PIP:

Hi Vinaire

I enjoy reading what you write and invariably look on your site when you leave a link. This particular link caught my interest https://vinaire.me/2012/07/16/discussions-and-what-needs-to-be-avoided/

On it you say under point 1 “Some people literally view God as a person who had created this universe. They completely ignore the inconsistency that a person has a form that occupies space ……… So God cannot be a person ……”

I believe you are making several assumptions here. Firstly the dictionary definition of “a person” is only one definition and fails to capture the essence of PERSONHOOD. The word “person” comes from persona which is defined as “a mask”. In Scientology terms “a valance”. This still falls short of what a believer mean by “person” when referring to God. In the Greek when referring to God as “a person” the word is hypostasis, which is essence. Baring this in mind I find it reasonable to suggest there may well be an “essence” behind creation that causes that creation to come into being.

I would go further to suggest that that which has being is preceded by PERSONHOOD. This I would see as the fundamental difference between SPIRIT and SOUL or in Scientology terminology between THETA and A THETAN. SPIRIT/THETA is un-differentiated and is therefore PERSONHOOD. SOUL/A THETAN is differentiated and is BEING. This suggests that “PERSONHOOD PROCEEDS BEING ”http://www.leithart.com/archives/003435.php Which is a reversal of how most people see it and indeed in common with all secular thinking Scientology postulates that ARC leads to love. Whereas Christianity in its purest form would say that love precedes ARC.

I would very much appreciate your comments on what I have written here. I like to think I am open to alternative viewpoints.

Regards
Pip

This discussion was important to me and I wanted it to proceed with minimum of distraction. I suggested to move the discussion to Vinaire’s Blog where the discussion policy is applied, and Pip agreed. I responded back by first defining a key word that Pip used, and then questioning something that Pip said, in order to clarify it:
hy·pos·ta·sis, noun
1. Metaphysics
a. something that stands under and supports; foundation.
b. the underlying or essential part of anything as distinguished from attributes; substance, essence, or essential principle.
2. Theology
a. one of the three real and distinct substances in the one undivided substance or essence of God.
b. a person of the Trinity.
c. the one personality of Christ in which His two natures, human and divine, are united.
3. Medicine/Medical
a. the accumulation of blood or its solid components in parts of an organ or body due to poor circulation.
b. such sedimentation, as in a test tube.
Origin: 
1580–90; < Late Latin < Greek hypóstasis that which settles at the bottom; substance, nature, essence, equivalent to hypo- hypo- + stásis standing, stasis

Vinaire:

Pip, you said, “Baring this in mind I find it reasonable to suggest there may well be an “essence” behind creation that causes that creation to come into being.”

From what I understand, essence of something is part of that thing. That means that the essence of creation would be part of that creation.

My question to you would be: Per your concept of God, is God part of the creation, or, is God separate and independent of creation?

Regards,
Vinay

.

Pip, you said, “I would go further to suggest that that which has being is preceded by PERSONHOOD. “

I am confused about the way you are using the word “being”. Anything that one can think of is being even if as just a thought. So, beingness would be an isness rather than havingness.

Please explain your use of the term “being”.

Regards,
Vinay

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The subsequent discussion went as follows:

PIP:

Dear Vinay

I would understand God to be separate and independent of creation. In the same way that in Scientology terms THETA being a pure static must be separate and independent from creation which by definition is always in motion. A crude example would be the relationship between the gearbox and the engine of a vehicle. When the engine is running and the vehicle is stationary the engine and the gearbox could be said to be separate and independent. The clutch changes the relationship between the two and through its application the two become one. In the same way I see a thetan as the connection between THETA and M.E.S.T.

I wanted to know more about what essence means and came across this site http://www.versebyverse.org/doctrine/divessence.html

Interestingly it mentions Pantheism and points out

1. This is the belief that God and the universe are one.
2. It denies the transcendence of God, as well as His personality.
3. This system claims that God is just the sum total of all that exists.
4. The Hindu religion is predicated upon this belief.

Regards
Pip

 

Hi Vinay

Everything that exists has beingness, as you say even if it is a thought, but what I am talking about is that which precedes beingness. That which thinks the thought; the awareness of awareness; that which is not located in space and time, which has the ability to enter space and time, at which time it becomes being; when SPIRIT BECOMES SOUL or PERSONHOOD becomes a person.

Love
Pip

.

Vinaire:

“I would understand God to be separate and independent of creation..”

PIP, I think I asked the wrong question. Sorry. The question I intended to ask was,
Is God separate and independent of existence?
Hope you can clarify that. Thanks.

Regards,
Vinaire

 

Hi Pip,

I am not sure if I am getting you clearly. To me being is the same concept as existing. If something is being then it is also existing. There are sequences that exist, meaning all steps of a sequence exist.

Are you saying that THAT which precedes beingness does not exist? If it does not exist then it cannot be known, right?

So, it would be unknowable. Am I right?

Regards,
Vinay

.

Pip:

Hi Vinaire

God does not exist, he IS EXISTENCE. I first read this in a book by a Jesuit priest and thought it was rather neat. He also said “God does not forgive, He is forgiveness”. I see it a bit like an artist painting a picture. In one sense he is independent of his picture but in another he is completely involved. He is both the creator and the creation.

Love
Pip

 

Hi again

The Factors say BEFORE THE BEGINNING WAS A CAUSE AND THE ENTIRE PURPOSE OF THE CAUSE WAS THE CREATION OF EFFECT. IN THE BEGINNING WAS THE DECISION AND THE DECISION WAS TO BE.

From this I get that before the beginning there was no BEING. Being did not exist, all that existed was existence. This I am suggesting is what PERSONHOOD IS. And yes you are right PERSONHOOD IS UNKNOWABLE, unless personhood wishes to reveal itself.

We as human beings can only know Beingness in all its myriad forms and we do this through AFFINITY, REALITY and COMMUNICATION. However to know personhood we need REVELATION and that happens through SURRENDER, which results in the experience of UNCONDITIONAL LOVE.

The reason “Absolutes are unobtainable” is because they cannot be grasped, they can only be surrendered to. The bible says “be still and know that I am God”.

Love
Pip 

.

Vinaire:

Hi Pip,

“God does not exist, he IS EXISTENCE.” is an inconsistency to me for the following reason:

The statement “God is EXISTENCE” basically says that God is an abstraction of existence. Linguistically, it is an abstract noun. Abstraction not only exists but also has form which makes one abstraction different from another. Actually, I look at abstraction as the fifth dimension of existence. Please see

https://vinaire.me/2014/03/11/the-4th-and-5th-dimensions/

So, God may not exist as something concrete, but it does exist as an abstraction. Therefore, saying that God does not exist is an inconsistency.

Regards,
Vinay

 

Hi Pip,

You are saying that God is PERSONHOOD, which is unknowable. To me this is inconsistent for the following reason.

If something is unknowable then it cannot be labeled as anything else but unknowable. Labeling it as anything else is indicative of a bias, which is an additive.

And bias has a form. It is a filter actually.

Regards,
Vinay

Here is how I see God!

https://vinaire.me/2010/12/05/essay-7-the-nature-of-god/
.

.

Pip:

Hi Vinay

Thanks for your replies. I believe you have a presupposition that is at variants to what I am proposing. Just because God is UNKNOWABLE does not mean he cannot be known.

I could think a thought and that thought would be unknowable to you, and if I chose not to let you know that thought it remains unknowable, but if I choose to reveal it to you that thought is then known by you.

That is the amazing thing about personhood, IT CAN KNOW THE UNKNOWABLE.

I was reminded of a story from THE Bible where Daniel not only interprets the king’s dream but also tells the king what the thoughts were that brought about the dream without the king telling him what those thoughts were. It is an amazing story; you can read it in full here
http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Daniel+2&version=MSG

Lots of love
Pip

.

Vinaire:

Hi Pip,

I am using the following definitions.

UNKNOWN: not known; not within the range of one’s knowledge, experience, or understanding; strange; unfamiliar.

UNKNOWABLE: incapable of being known or understood

One may think that God has been revealed to one, but that would still be a view through a filter. There is revelation due to a sudden reduction of filters. As long as there is a separation between self and God, there is a filter.

A filtered view of God is not the God i am talking about. Hope you understand.

Regards,
Vinay

 

Hi Pip,

First of all I want to acknowledge that your revelations are real. I have my revelations too. The revelations of all those millions of people over the past 2000 years are real too. I have no quarrel with that.

A revelation occurs when there is a sudden drop in filters. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that all filters are gone.

Space or separation is a filter. As long as one is viewing “God” through separation the complete experience of God is not there.

When one is viewing God as a person, it is being viewed through the filter of separation. Hope you understand where I am coming from.

Regards,
Vinay

.

Epilogue:

No further response came from Pip. But he went to the Discussion Policy on my blog and clicked on LIKE. That made me very happy.
This is my realization:

God is the reality beyond the filters. The very last filter is the “filter of separation” and that is also the “filter of self”.

.

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Comments

  • Eric S  On May 25, 2014 at 10:51 PM

    Vinaire

    Hi. I would like to engage in a discussion on this forum.

    I read your post on “discussion”. I appreciate the parameters that you have set. I will attempt to stay within those guidelines. Please nudge me back should I stray into non-productive forms of communication.

    The goal that I am working toward is expanding my willingness, and ability, to experience other viewpoints. By broadening the scope of viewpoints

    I have noted things that you have communicated to others that I have found align with thoughts or conclusions that I myself have made. I have noted others where that is not the case. I have also experienced others where I am certain that I have not fully grasped your viewpoint.

    But you seem to be offering the possibility of having valid discussion, without any requirement for agreement, from any party, on the hypothesis being discussed. This seems like a potentially highly productive exercise, whatever the subject being discussed.

    Eric

    • Eric S  On May 25, 2014 at 11:00 PM

      Oops… The last line of paragraph three is incomplete. It is an “orphan” comment. Please ignore.

    • Chris Thompson  On May 26, 2014 at 11:58 AM

      Welcome Eric!

  • vinaire  On May 26, 2014 at 5:26 AM

    Eric, Welcome to Vinaire’s Blog.

    As you can see this blog is oriented toward learning and education.

    This blog is not self-centric.

  • vinaire  On May 26, 2014 at 5:35 AM

    Eric says: “But you seem to be offering the possibility of having valid discussion, without any requirement for agreement, from any party, on the hypothesis being discussed.”

    LOL! It sounds like some impossibility is being addressed here. This kind of approach is common among objective thinkers like scientists. We are simply applying objectivity to “spiritual” topics where subjectivity abounds.

    Agreement has to do with added subjectivity. Reality is simply what it is.

    Self-centrism seems to look for agreement.

    Unlike what Hubbard thought, Reality has little to do with agreement. Yes, filters are strengthened by agreement.

    • Eric S  On May 26, 2014 at 12:30 PM

      Hi Vinaire and Chris

      Thanks for the welcome.

      Although this approach may be used by some, my experience has shown it to be somewhat scarce. I am glad to hear that it is in common use amongst objective thinkers.

      Eric

      • vinaire  On May 26, 2014 at 1:31 PM

        Check out how science grew in early twentieth century.

        Spiritual knowledge will grow but outside the theistic environment.
        .

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